COMPLETE ALL STATE LISTINGS
Hunter Middleton put the final stroke on a successful high school softball career this week as the Panther senior was named to the Kansas Softball Coaches Association’s first team All State squad.
Middleton, a 2015 All WAC selection, broke two school records this year in single season wins and strikeouts. She retired 166 opposing batters by strikeout and posted a record breaking 20 single season wins.
Middleton broke both records in May following 10-0 and 7-1 wins over TMP. She recorded 12 strike outs in the first game and retired one more for good measure after an inning’s work in game two to break the single season strikeout record with 137 for the season. Middleton also collected her 15th win of 2015 in that series.
“Hunter is very deserving of this honor,” said GBHS coach Carrie Minton. “I think that after her All State honorable mention as a sophomore she was just so appreciative of that and worked hard to build and improve on her game over her junior and senior seasons. Her leadership enabled her to work hard for the team, and the team, likewise, worked hard for her.”
Middleton joins two other senior pitchers on the 5A All State team as pitchers, Bishop Carroll’s Britanny Finney and Hailey Reed of Topeka Seaman. Bishop Carroll is on a winning streak dating back to the 2010 season and won their fifth consecutive state title last month. Finney will play for the Oklahoma Sooners next season.
“When you look at the company Hunter joined on the All State pitcher’s list, it just proves again the caliber of pitcher she is,” said Minton. “The common thread between these three players is their work ethic and willingness to improve their game.”
Middleton helped lead Great Bend through the regional championship this season as the Panthers defeated Emporia and Maize South by scores of 13-3 and 2-1. She pitched the complete game victory over Maize South and worked out of a few jams in the process striking out nine opposing batters. She worked three innings against Emporia striking out seven batters and did not allow a single runner to base.
Great Bend ended the season in the first round of the state tournament falling to Blue Valley West, 5-0. Despite the loss Middleton worked the entire outing and retired six opposing batters as the Panthers finished the season with a record of 20-3. The Panthers finished with a perfect 8-0 record in the Western Athletic Conference earning them the conference title.
Middleton will take her talents to NCAA Division II Southwest Baptist University next season. SBU is a member of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) and is located in Bolivar, Missouri.